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Here We Go Again: Bob McDonnell Angers Black Leaders, Civil Rights Groups on Voting Rights

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Another day, another controversy for Bob McDonnell.

For the second time in a week, Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell has angered black leaders and civil rights groups, this time when they learned of his plans to add another step for nonviolent felons to have their voting rights restored.

McDonnell (R) will require the offenders to submit an essay outlining their contributions to society since their release, turning a nearly automatic process into a subjective one that some say may prevent the poor and less-educated from being allowed to vote.

“It’s another roadblock,” Sen. Yvonne B. Miller (D-Norfolk), a member of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, said when she was told of the change.

Miller has repeatedly introduced unsuccessful bills to allow nonviolent offenders to have their rights restored automatically. “This is designed to suppress the rights of poor people,” she said.

Can McDonnell, Cooch et al. go even one day without angering someone or stirring up yet another controversy? It’s hard to believe these guys have only been in office since January; it seems like an eternity.

P.S. This is yet another example of why Tim Kaine should have restored all non-violent, ex-felons’ voting rights before he left office. Big mistake.

UPDATE: Check out my recommended diary at Daily Kos.